Cheese: The Universal 80s Constant

For your consideration: A perestroika-era video of Soviet musicians doing a snappy, jazzy remix of a Soviet anthem:

Also for your consideration: “Stars,” by Hear N’ Aid, the 80s metal analogue to Band-Aid and USA for Africa:

Compare and contrast.

26 Comments on “Cheese: The Universal 80s Constant”

  1. I’ll play keys, some bass and warble like Yoko Ono.

    I gave them both a good listen. They are both horrid. Both soaked in too much vodka, though the American one of course has more cocaine in it.

    Except for Dio and Halford, starz suckz.

  2. Video A:
    Well I am kind of Anti-Russian at the moment due to a WW2 German Documentary I watched last night about the Russian Army advance on Germany. And let me tell you. There were RUTHLESS. And the video sucks also.

    Video B:
    Spandex? Come on Chang I have seen Yoga teachers wear some pretty interesting things. And not 1980 yoga teachers ;). But You are correct Dio and Halford rock. And OK Bruce D. does also. The rest just want to be them. God bless Metallica for breaking us out of 80’s rock.

  3. Just remember kids, this is the carnage that results when you combine fan service with social justice.

    (No, not a fan of Ani DiFranco. Why do you ask?)

  4. Chang:
    I know. So completely horrific.
    I will never reveal my metal past to know one. In fear that my daughter will find out and blackmail me…

  5. Hear N’ Aid??? I thought you were being funny, but then I actually watched the video.

    Did they name the band for people who actually needed ear trumpets after listening to this shit? I will never hear Don’t fear the reaper the same again.

    And damn if I didn’t see Spinal Tap in there. I don’t think it’s supposed to be funny, but it is. Oh, it is!

  6. I have more slots in 80’s metal than I thought. I could name 90 percent of the faces, and knew every voice that took a shot at lead.

    The song was kinda lame, a retread of Rainbow in Dark was the best they could come up with? Come on, a couple of those guys could have written a better song while being completely wasted.

    A couple of the Spinal Tap guys can be seen in the background. Wonder if Shearer and McKean did any lines with the metal guys.

    And Chang, what about Tate? He has an amazing voice.

  7. First of all, there’s really no need to compare and contrast. Both are conclusive evidence (as if we needed any more), that the ’80’s were a tragic mistake, best ignored and/or forgotten. (Think 13th floor in many buildings. Logically, you know it’s gotta be there, but just try to find the button in the elevator.)

    Second, just how many bands are you planning to start, John?

  8. Re: “Spandex Oppression”
    Ooh, ooh! Can I design the logo? It’ll be a heraldic crest of neon-striped moose knuckles, and just the suggestion of a studded cock ring for added frisson.
    Do I win anything?
    BTW, I liked the ’80s. Lot of nice things happened and saw some good movies. I just didn’t listen to music between 1984 and 1992.

  9. I’m watching the second video, and I’m all, “Wow. This sucks. How did I love this stuff? Oy.” And then I got all fluffy in the tummy when I saw George Lynch. And Geoff Tate from those incredible early Queensryche days. *flutter*

    So embarassed. Apparently, inside, I’m still 15. Screw Oil of Olay. Bad retro videos are the secret to eternal youth.

  10. Ach! My Internet Overlords block such video goodness! I’ll have to wait until I get home from work :(

  11. **Important announcement. We just heard word of a new tour. Be prepared for…

    Spandex Oppression!
    (with opening band Lesbian Koala Orgy)

    Go to for showtimes and tickets.

  12. Thank you, John, I was having an epically crappy day until I watched that first video. I never knew that my Russian heritage and my came-up-in-the-80s heritage could mashup so beautifully.

  13. This is why in the Soviet Union and satelite countries, Jazz was considered a major threat. RnB, not so much. And here in the US, we thought Heavy Metal and Rock and Roll were the threat. Jazz, not so much.

  14. Though I’ve heard that song dozens of times, I haven’t seen the video in probably 20 years. I had totally forgotten the David St. Hubbins and Derek Smalls were on that session.

    Looking at Rob Halford, how did anyone not know he’s gay? He’s always been a total leather daddy.

    And, why people gotta dis the 80s, man? Most frequent station on my Sirius satellite radio? “Hair Nation.” I don’t even feel guilty about that pleasure.

  15. We need to define for our own use the word which describes a state of being where you have more to do than any two people could usually accomplish but are either so blasé about the requirements or able to work so fast and efficiently that you have enough time left in your day to putter, make obscure references, link to cheesy bands, IM, and multi-blog and generally give the impression that you have far too much time on your hands when the nature of your accomplishments and obligations would seem to deny the possibility.

    Perhaps “Scalzifying”? as in “President Bush, you have a cabinet meeting on Iraq in 10 minutes and an Energy Crisis meeting in an hour and you are playing video games!” “No problem, I’m just Scalzifying here”

    Old Jarhead

  16. Oh, mercy. That second video really took me back, both for the song/video itself and for all the faces/voices in it. Like Jeff, I recognized pretty much everybody.

    The 80s were a disaster in a lot of ways, but they sure were fun at the time. Now, cocaine and Absolut all ’round!

  17. Anyone know the name of the anthem they jazzed up (if that’s the term to use) on the first vid? I’ve heard it before, in another youtube thing, featuring anime girls.

  18. The Soviet one at least had a good tune to start with, and it could be discerned most of the time. Inspiring graphics, too. (I always wanted to work in that style, and finally had my excuse the other day.)

    The Hear’n’Aid one, though. (Great name: I’m sure they all have one now.) I commented over there that I’m surprised they haven’t all been reunited to sing that in the past tense for a PBS fundraiser.

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